SEAFDEC initiatives on mitigating the impacts of abandoned, lost, or otherwise discarded fishing gear on marine capture fisheries of Southeast Asia
Fishing gears have been lost, abandoned, or otherwise discarded in all seas and oceans ever since fishing began. Abandoned, lost, or otherwise discarded fishing gear (ALDFG), also known as “ghost gear” is a significant component of marine litter with far-reaching impacts on marine ecosystems, fishery resources, and coastal communities. ALDFG not only resulted in increased operational costs for fishing vessel owners for the replacement and retrieval efforts of lost gear, but it also continued to catch target or non-target aquatic species, entangle and kill marine animals including threatened, protected, and commercially important fish species. While surface ALDFG presents a hazard for aquatic resources and resource users, near-bottom ALDFG causes damage to coral reefs and seabed which are important ecosystems.